Archived Triz Journals

 

1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2007

February

Case Studies In TRIZ: Child Safety Stairgate

This article discusses the Child Safety Stairgate conceived by John and Ann Hirst of Team Innovation in Bath. The inspiration for the design came initially from the traumatic personal experience of watching powerless as their son fell from the top of a flight of stairs.
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Case Studies in TRIZ: Helicopter Engine Particle Separator

Modern day helicopter powerplants are highly sophisticated pieces of machinery. A state of the art military engine may typically generate up to 20 times more power than an automobile engine of a comparable size.
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April

Case Studies In TRIZ: A Re-Usable, Self-Locking Nut

A well-known European company organises and runs an annual design competition aimed at solving a real engineering problem. The 1998 competition looked at the problems associated with rapid, safe wheel changes on Formula 1 racing cars.
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June

Axiomatic Design And TRIZ: Compatibilities and Contradictions, Part 1

TRIZ offers a wide-ranging series of tools and methods to help designers and inventors to solve problems in creative and powerful ways. For the most part these methods have evolved independent and separate from many of the design strategies developed outside Russia.
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July

Axiomatic Design And TRIZ: Compatibilities and Contradictions Part II

This article follows last month’s brief look at Nam Suh’s Axiomatic Design (AD) ideas and their possible relationship with TRIZ (1). The aim in this article will be to take a more detailed look at some of the AD tools and techniques in an attempt to demonstrate some of the benefits they may offer to TRIZ-based problem definition and problem solution processes.
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Using S-Curves and Trends of Evolution in R&D Strategy Planning

Effective organisations understand where their products lie on the technology evolution characteristics relevant to the market in which they operate. A recent article by Michael Slocum (2) demonstrated how TRIZ tools and techniques allowed this strategic positioning activity to take place using the example of an industry sector currently at the infancy stage. This article seeks to build on that work by looking at a product family in the mature phase of its evolution path.
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September

40 Inventive (Business) Principles With Examples

Interest in the possible applicability of TRIZ tools and techniques to the world of management and organisational innovation issues continues to grow. The aim of this article is to place the 40 Inventive Principles of TRIZ in the context of this business environment. The format of the article is based closely on an earlier text (1) in which examples of technical deployment of the Principles were given.
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The (Predictable) Evolution Of Useful Things

‘The Evolution of Useful Things’ by Professor Henry Petroski (Reference 1) is a fascinating historical account of the evolution of everyday objects. The book uses a number of richly detailed case studies - from cutlery to hamburger wrappers, and paper clips to telephones - to build up a general picture of why things evolve the way they do.
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November

Creativity As An Exact (Biomimetic) Science

It was always Altshuller’s view that TRIZ would one day expand to encompass knowledge from the biological sciences (1, 2). In the first instance, it is likely that a biological knowledge-base will be incorporated into the Effects part of the Theory, thus allowing engineers and scientists to utilise biological data in a form which relates a known biological effect to the desired functional capability trying to be achieved. It is not difficult to see how this incorporation process may be achieved.
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December

Business Contradictions - 1) "Mass Customization"

This article is the first in what will be a series of articles examining connections between TRIZ and the solution of problems involving contradictions found in the business world.
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Case Studies In TRIZ: A Novel Heat Exchanger (Use of Function Analysis Modelling to Find and Eliminate Contradictions)

The Russian initiated Theory of Inventive Problem Solving (TRIZ) (1, 2) and those aspects of the Theory implemented in software (3) have begun to penetrate deeply into the development departments of leading, innovative organisations and educational establishments.
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January

Contradiction Chains

We often hear talk about ‘design without compromise’ and ‘contradiction elimination’ in papers about TRIZ. Both terms carry the implication that TRIZ offers some kind of a panacea to the ills of the engineering and design worlds. While this is clearly not the case in practice, the Contradictions tools and methods contained in the TRIZ schema are nevertheless still very important paradigm changing tools that offer much to help design better products, processes and services.
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February

Trimming Evolution Patterns For Complex Systems

This brief article examines the evolution of a complex engineering system the gas-turbine engine – from the perspective of its relationship to the ‘trimming’ technology evolution trend.
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March

Strength versus Weight Contradictions In Bridge Design

Most if not all engineering systems experience a strength versus weight conflict of some description. The contradiction most commonly manifests itself in the balance designers attempt to strike between the need to ensure adequate strength, and the parallel desire to utilise the minimum amount of material, and thus achieve the lowest cost.
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April

Physical Contradictions and Evaporating Clouds

An early TRIZ Journal article (1) hinted at possible links between TRIZ and the Theory of Constraints (TOC). Subsequent articles last May (2) and September (3) progressed the connection further by examining how two particular TOC tools - the Current Reality Tree (CRT) and the Conflict Resolution Diagram (CRD) – could help in the definition of the inventive situation and identification of the core problem to be tackled with TRIZ methods. This article picks up the connection between TRIZ and the Conflict Resolution Diagram – or ‘Evaporating Cloud’ – and demonstrates how the two techniques are being integrated and used to mutual benefit in the solution of both technical and non-technical problems.
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May

Design Without Compromise, Design for Life

Designers traditionally find themselves trying to perform a balancing act between conflicting design parameters; weight versus strength, speed versus life, efficiency versus complexity, or efficiency versus cost, to name but a few common trade-off scenarios. In each case, as the designer tries to improve one parameter, the other tends to get worse. Higher shaft speeds mean shorter bearing life, close tolerance gears in a gear pump mean greater pumping efficiency but higher manufacture cost, and so on.
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July

Case Studies in TRIZ: A Better Wrench

This article is about how TRIZ can be used to design better wrenches, it is about defining the right problem to solve, and it is about using the difference between conceptual and specific solutions to transfer ‘good’ principles from one discipline to another.
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August

Application of Triz Tools in a Non-Technical Problem Context

Although initially conceived as a systematic creativity and innovation methodology for engineers and scientists, TRIZ has recently been recognised as having much to offer the non-technical, business and management communities. Indeed, the term ‘systematic innovation’ has as much to do with the improvement in business processes and services as it ever has to the conception of new products.
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September

Case Studies in TRIZ: A Novel Jet Engine Nose Cone

Now, more than ever, engineers are faced with the need for rapid development of creative solutions to their problems. But what is creativity? Can we define what we are looking for? Often people are careful not to define creativity, as it is such a complex phenomenon. Furthermore, teaching creativity becomes fostering, nurturing, stimulating or allowing creativity. This article suggests that it is possible to enhance a creative potential and therefore the chances of a creative solution by employing structured approaches, such as TRIZ.
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TRIZ in Biology Teaching

As an initial part of a project aimed to bring TRIZ into biological sciences (and, of course, bring biological sciences into TRIZ!) we set a series of problems to a class of 2nd year biology students who had just had a course in the mechanical design of organisms, given as part of their degree course in Reading. The students had a half-hour introduction to TRIZ (given by JFVV), were then given a copy of the Contradiction Matrix, a list of the Inventive Principles with an abbreviated list of examples, and set to work for two hours (DM in attendance), in groups of about 8 students, to attack one of the following six problems. These problems, and solutions to which the students arrived, are presented here together with a few of our comments and suggestions.
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November

Influence of S-Curves on Use of Inventive Principles

This article discusses emerging correlations between evolutionary S-curves and the 40 Inventive Principles contained within TRIZ. The position of a system - be it technical or non-technical - on its current S-curve plays a significant role in determining which TRIZ tools may be deployed to improve the system.
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December

Making Knowledge Tangible

Organisations have been slowly acknowledging the significant role to be played by knowledge as an essential part of their capital assets. Knowledge management has been concerned with concepts of knowledge and communication as important for how knowledge is managed. Some specialists have focused on IT as the key to future developments. Others have critiqued this approach, not in rejecting IT as such but in it being given prominence. Some of the arguments have been based on the view that knowledge is qualitative as well as quantitative and also that we need to take into account the creation of knowledge as well as the storing of the known in data banks.
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January

ETRIA - European TRIZ Association

The founding members are pleased to announce the founding, on 15 October 2000, of the European TRIZ Association, ETRIA.
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Using MINDMAPS™ * with TRIZ

MindMaps™ are a concise way of displaying notes and information and their associations. Tony Buzan developed Mind Maps as an efficient way of using the brain's ability for association. Association plays a dominant role in nearly every mental function, and words themselves are no exception. Every single word and idea has numerous links attaching it to other ideas and concepts.
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March

TRIZ Thinking Hats

One of the great strengths of TRIZ relative to other creativity methodologies is that it is built on solid technical rather than psychological foundations. That being said, the power of TRIZ can be shown to be enhanced greatly by appropriate combination with the best of the methods developed by psychology-based researchers.
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April

Using TRIZ to Overcome Business Contradictions: Profitable E-Commerce

Few if any dot-com businesses have attained profitable status. Most are still riding a wave of massive investor confidence and happily talk about ‘burn-rate’ as a measure of success. This situation is unlikely to last for too much longer, and sooner rather than later, someone is going to have to work out how to engineer a sustainable profit from operating in a virtual environment.
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May

Food Product Development and the 40 Inventive Principles

“Worryingly…a significant number of Irish food companies are not actively developing any new food products, while many that are engaged in new product development do not explicitly involve consumers in their research” (DeBurca and Ledwith 2000: 30).
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Laws of System Completeness

This article is about the TRIZ Law of Technical Completeness and how it compares to the findings of researchers from other disciplines. Specifically, the article compares TRIZ work with that of Stafford Beer with his ‘Viable System Model’, and the work on the application of Game Theory to business strategy described in Nalebuff and Brandenburger’s seminal book, ‘Coopetition’.
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June

The Space Between ‘Generic’ and ‘Specific’ Problem Solutions

Since its introduction to the West around a decade ago, TRIZ has proved itself to be an extremely potent problem solving and product innovation method.
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July

40 Inventive (Architecture) Principles With Examples

This article seeks to explore the applicability of the 40 Inventive Principles of classical TRIZ across the field of architecture.
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Case Studies In TRIZ: Anti Red-Eye Flash Photography

Anyone who has taken photographs using flash photography will be aware of the phenomenon known as ‘red-eye’ - Figure 1 illustrates a typical example. Although there are several well known ‘solutions’ to the red-eye problem, the phenomenon has by no means completely disappeared.
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August

Any Colour You Like As Long As It’s The One You Want: TRIZ and Customisable Foods

This paper focuses on some of the conflicts and contradictions associated with the evolution of the retail food industry, most notably the conflict between decreasing consumer time for preparation of food versus an often-corresponding desire to enjoy a product that fits their precise wishes.
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September

"5W's and an H " of TRIZ Innovation

It is a commonly held view that ‘90% of the problem is defining what the problem is’. In actual fact, every time the statement or a derivative of it appears, the importance of problem definition seems to tend ever higher as a proportion of the total problem.
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System Operator Tutorial - 1) 9-Windows On The World

This article forms the first of a series providing novel perspectives on the interpretation and application of the TRIZ ‘system operator’ or ‘9-windows’ tool.
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October

40 Inventive (Food) Principles With Examples

This article seeks to explore the applicability of the 40 Inventive Principles of classical TRIZ across the food industry. The work comes in the wake of initial work to investigate the usefulness of TRIZ to help solve food related problems (Reference 1).
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Integrating Knowledge From Biology Into The TRIZ Framework

We are pleased to announce that the University of Bath has been successful in acquiring support funding from one of the UK University research funding bodies to carry out a programme of work to integrate knowledge from the biological and biomimetic sciences into the TRIZ framework.
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November

System Operator Tutorial - 2) Between The Boxes - Changing Perspectives

One of the problems commonly associated with the use of the system operator tool emerges from the way we draw it or see it presented to us. Almost inherently in either situation, we are separate from the 9-Windows; we sit above them, looking down on them from a third dimension; we are outside, separate from the windows, looking in.
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Taguchi and TRIZ: Comparisons and Opportunities

In this article, we draw comparisons between TRIZ and the tools and strategies contained in Taguchi methods. Our aim is to identify areas of common ground and differences between the two approaches which might enable users of TRIZ to benefit from the findings of Taguchi methods.
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December

System Operator Tutorial - 3) Another Dimension

In the last article we discussed some of the problems that can occur when we place ourselves ‘outside’ the 9 windows of the system operator, and how we can overcome those problems. In this article, we look at why this separation takes place and how our understanding of this ‘why’ can influence a range of problem and opportunity situations.
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January

System Operator Tutorial - 4) Integrating Other Perspectives

In this, the last article we discuss some of the other tools and strategies we might use in a problem definition and solving context that can benefit through integration with the TRIZ system operator.
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TRIZ For Everyone (Even Those Who Don’t Want To Spend A Year Learning It)

Different people use TRIZ in different ways. This article builds on discussions begun at the TRIZ Future 2001 conference in Bath, and is about trying to find a common ground and understanding between the people describing themselves as having the ‘TRIZ virus’, and those who don’t have the time, will or desire to invest a lot of time learning the tremendous amount of available richness.
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February

Assessing The Accuracy Of The Contradiction Matrix For Recent Mechanical Inventions

While some parts of the TRIZ community might debate the value of the Contradiction Matrix (Reference 1, 2) as a problem-solving tool, it is undoubtedly an attractive concept to both users and newcomers. A large part of the dis-satisfaction with the Matrix seems actually to stem from the fact that it is out of date rather than conceptually incorrect, and that to update it would require a lot of effort that might be better spent elsewhere.
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Klondike versus Homing Solution Searches

This article follows on from previous ones discussing in one instance the space between the generic solution triggers offered by TRIZ and the specific solutions desired by a problem solver (Reference 1), and in the other, the optimization versus innovation debate discussed in Reference 2.
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April

Evolving The World’s Systematic Creativity Methods

The article describes a programme of work currently being undertaken to expand and evolve TRIZ. The work is involving a renewed programme of analysis of the global patent database – taking into account the shifting emphasis of the intellectual property database towards markedly increased numbers of electronic and software based inventions – in order to improve the Contradiction Matrix, trends of evolution and other tools. The article also describes improvements to an overriding systematic creativity philosophy being generated by integration of TRIZ with other problem definition and solution methods like QFD, DFMA, Value Engineering, Robust Design, Theory of Constraints, as well as less formal approaches like those found in the work of Edward De Bono, Tony Buzan and NLP.
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May

Analysis Paralysis: When Root Cause Analysis Isn’t The Way

All of the disciplines within any kind of organization routinely seek to solve their problems. All of us who are a part of an organization are problem solvers . . . and root cause analysts, although many of us may prefer to think of our problem solving process as something less fancy than "root cause analysis". But, as we come to our problems in an effort to control and prevent interruptions, obstacles, errors, and counter-quality occurrences, we none-the-less are all looking for the same things: root causes of problems that when removed prevent the problem.
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Systematic Win-Win Problem Solving In A Business Environment

TRIZ research has shown that the strongest solutions and ideas are the ones in which the problem or opportunity owner has successfully challenged the conflicts and trade-offs that others have assumed to be fundamental. Classical TRIZ includes a Matrix that enables owners of technical problems to quickly identify the inventive strategies used by others facing similar design conflicts.
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June

Evolutionary-Potential™ in Technical and Business Systems

An evolved version of TRIZ containing a series of generically predictable technology and business evolution trends uncovered from the systematic analysis of patents, academic journals and business texts. The current state of the art now brings the total number of generic technical trends to over 30, and the number of business trends to over 20.
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July

Book Review: “Hands-on Systematic Innovation”

Dr. Darrell Mann is a frequent author for the TRIZ Journal, and a co-author and friend of the editors, and CREAX is one of the TRIZ Journal’s sponsors. Does this mean we’re going to tell you that this is a terrific book? Yes, we’ll tell you it is a terrific book, on its own merits, not because of any of our relationships!
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August

Evolving the Inventive Principles

The 40 Inventive Principles of classical TRIZ are useful creativity tools in a variety of problem solving situations. On the other hand, they are often criticised for being too abstract, for their often illogical sequencing, their level of overlap, for the gaps that they contain and, most of all, for the difficulty most people experience trying to remember them all.
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October

Design for Wow - An ‘Exciter’ Hypothesis

The Kano diagram is a well established and frequently discussed concept in many innovation circles, including TRIZ. It offers a very elegant model of what prompts customers to select one product or service over another. The model implicitly suggests that those things that ‘excite’ customers hold the key to what will be successful versus what will not. Beyond this conceptual definition, however, there is a considerable gap between the knowledge that ‘excitement’ factors are important and knowing what to do to actually achieve them. The theme of this short article is to suggest that in many senses ‘excitement’ can be systematically designed.
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Disruptive Advertising: TRIZ And The Advertisement

This article is about the possible application of some of the TRIZ tools to the problem of marketing, and specifically issues surrounding the systematic creation of disruptive advertisements. Disruptive advertisements according to one of the world’s leading advertising agencies are those that attract customers because they fundamentally challenge and disrupt conventional modes of thinking. In TRIZ terms, a disruptive advertisement is one that challenges a contradiction. The article uses a UK survey of the nation’s favourite television advertisements as its foundation and examines them for the presence of contradiction elimination and, where relevant, the strategies used to overcome those contradictions.
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November

Using TRIZ to Resolve Educational Delivery Conflicts Inherent to Expelled Students in Pennsylvania

Public education in the U.S. is now facing increasing competition from private educational initiatives especially in the virtual domain. In Pennsylvania public education is partially funded by the State, based upon student enrollment and attendance. The increasing numbers of two groups of students, those who are homebound and those who are homeschooled, are adversely affecting the monetary resources available to districts.
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December

Evolving TRIZ Using TRIZ and NLP/Neurosemantics

TRIZ is becoming recognised as the most powerful and complete philosophy available for the definition and solution of technical problems or opportunity situations. As reported by several practitioners, however, TRIZ or more generally ‘systematic creativity’ is still viewed as being at just the beginning of its eventual evolution path. In this paper we discuss the results of our findings when first applying TRIZ trend prediction principles to predict the future evolution of the various tools, methods and strategies contained in today’s versions of TRIZ, and then integrating some of the findings of the parallel-developed Neuro-Linguistic Programming philosophy. We demonstrate significant common ground between the two approaches and many opportunities for mutually beneficial integration.
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January

Complexity Increases And Then… (Thoughts From Natural System Evolution)

According to the classic TRIZ trend, over the course of their complete evolutionary existence, systems evolve in a manner that sees them first increase and then decrease in complexity.
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February

Book Review: TRIZ Companion By Catherine Lundberg, clundberg@ontro.com

TRIZ Companion is an excellent reference that even the most skilled TRIZ practitioner would find helpful and useful. The authors give a brief introduction to the theory behind TRIZ and explain in what areas of the design process TRIZ is useful and where other tools, such as Axiomatic Design, can help supplement TRIZ to create a truly innovative and robust solution or design.
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IDEALITY AND ‘SELF-X’ Part 1: Things That Do Things For Themselves

This article forms the first in a series of three discussing the importance of systems that incorporate solutions incorporating the word ‘self’ – self-cleaning, self-balancing, selfaligning, etc – in the context of their relationship – in the true TRIZ sense – to the concept of ideality. This first article discusses the state of the art regarding technical system design solutions achieving self-x delivery of useful functions. It comes as a result of an extensive analysis of the US and other patent databases. The second article in the series will present a number of examples of systems in which ‘self’ has been successfully used to achieve a more ideal solution, while the third article in the series will shift its focus to the equivalent importance of ‘self-x’ systems in a business and management context.
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March

IDEALITY AND ‘SELF-X’ Part 2: Meals, Wheels, and Carpet Slippers Technical Case Studies

This article forms the second in a series of three discussing the importance of systems that incorporate solutions incorporating the word ‘self’ – self-cleaning, self-balancing, selfaligning, etc – in the context of their relationship – in the true TRIZ sense – to the concept of ideality. This second article illustrates a number of technical examples of inventions and solutions built on the self-x concept discussed in the first article. Each of the case studies is intended to both show the importance of ‘self’ as a solution direction, and also some of the important additional implications of thinking about this word in an innovation context.
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SUPPORT – Sustainable Innovation Tools Project

The Industrial Liaison department at the University of Leoben in Austria is proud to announce the commencement of the SUPPORT project. The project – funded by the EU Leonardo da Vinci initiative (Reference 1) – is intended to generate education materials to encourage systematic innovation in the sustainability field. Partners involved in the project come from five different parts of the European Community.
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March

Evaporating Contradictions - Physical and/or Technical

There has been considerable discussion in recent years concerning the relative importance of physical and technical contradictions. The clear implication from ARIZ-based processes and from the majority of former-Soviet Bloc authors is that the physical contradiction is more important than the technical contradiction. More recent evidence presented at a 2002 conference suggests that, in terms of numbers of ideas generated, there is no significant difference between the types. (1) The presenters also noted that when both physical and technical contradictions were considered the total number of useful ideas generated was considerably higher. In retrospect this latter finding should not be a surprise; making a choice between tackling a problem as a physical contradiction or a technical contradiction is in itself another contradiction. When in any either/or discussion, the best answer is very likely that a) we are asking the wrong question and b) that to adopt a both/and approach is far preferable to an either/or alternative.
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September

Breakthrough Carbon Capture: Exploiting Trade-Offs

Despite the considerable on-going research into a variety of pre- and post-combustion carbon capture and storage technologies, there is concern that these programs will not achieve the required optimal solutions suitable for timely implementation at costs that are acceptable to the consumer.
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